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SVG issues communiqué on Israeli/Palestinian violence

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The Government of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines strongly urges the Government of the State of Israel to cease its most recent military campaign against the State of Palestine. We condemn attacks against Palestinians in East Jerusalem and Gaza and unilateral actions of the Israeli authorities with respect to Palestinian land. Most recently, Israeli forces have attempted to remove Palestinians from Al-Haram Al-Sharif and Silwan neighbourhoods; conducted air strikes on Gaza; and launched weaponised attacks on Palestinians worshipping at Al-Aqsa Mosque – all of which we strongly condemn.

Moreover, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines condemns the use of force against innocent Palestinians resulting, most recently, in injuries to hundreds and the death of over one hundred Palestinians, many of whom were children. We express our deepest condolences to the families of the victims and reaffirm our solidarity with the State of Palestine.

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines stands steadfastly against any attempts to alter the character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem, by force. The United Nations Security Council has “Affirm[ed] a vision of a region where two States, Israel and Palestine, live side by side within secure and recognised borders.” The international community, in consistently reaffirming the two-state solution, has emphasised that the status of Jerusalem is a “final status” issue to be negotiated by the parties. This position has been reaffirmed in various agreements, including the Camp David Accords, the Oslo Accords, and the Roadmap for Peace proposed by the Quartet on the Middle East.

The United Nations Resolution of November 22 2017 stated that the General Assembly “Reiterates its determination that any actions taken by Israel, the occupying Power, to impose its laws, jurisdiction and administration on the Holy City of Jerusalem are illegal and therefore null and void and have no validity whatsoever, and calls upon Israel to immediately cease all such illegal and unilateral measures.”

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, as an elected member of the Security Council and as a Member State of the United Nations General Assembly, will continue to stand against these violations of United Nations Security Council and General Assembly resolutions. Conflict prevention demands that violations such as the ones we have witnessed against the Palestinian State over the past week do not go unchecked – impunity creates a climate of perpetual unease and unrest. We call on all parties with influence over the situation to urge Israel to stop its military aggression against the Palestinian people, and to fully respect their legitimate and fundamental claims to dignity, equality and human rights.

The Government of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines also expresses sincere condolences to the families of the several people killed in Israel. We also welcome the diplomatic efforts of other States and parties to end this deadly siege, but more must be done. The Security Council must stand by its previous resolutions, uphold international law, the Fourth Geneva Convention and the UN Charter.